My name is Rebecca Todd.

I'm seventeen years old and live in a small house with my parents and my younger sister, Jamie. My home life isn't so bad, all things considered. There are times when I hate every person under this roof, but that's normal. Normal for me, anyway.

I want to tell you a story.

I'll begin by saying that I'm severely depressed, have no self esteem to speak of, and I'm bullied. I've been an outcast amongst my peers since fifth grade, when I was the new girl who just wanted to fade into the background. My last boyfriend was emotionally abusive. Our relationship lasted almost two years before my best friend, Stephen, talked me into leaving him. He is the only person I really, truly trust. He and I are closer than a pair of socks rolled together in a drawer. He's been with me through everything. He's always been there to save me.

My name is Rebecca Todd.

This is the one time he wasn't there to save me.

The day started out pretty normally. I woke up, got dressed, went to school. Everything was fine until lunch. I was sitting with my friends, laughing over a story that had been recounted, when I felt something hit the back of my head. I turned to see what it was. The wadded up piece of notebook paper bounced about a foot away and sat there accusingly. Getting up, I retrieved the crumpled ball. As I walked to throw it away, I unfolded it to see what it said. There was one phrase scrawled in heavy pencil strokes across the center of the page.

"You are nothing."

It felt as if I had been punched in the stomach. Plastering an indifferent expression across my face, I tossed the vile note into the garbage can and walked calmly back to my seat. My friends asked what it had said. I could feel the stares of the enemy boring into me as I smiled carelessly.

"Nothing. Absolutely nothing." If Stephen had been there, he would have known better. But he wasn't.

Something inside of me broke as I plodded home from school. The note's message was burned into my memory; every time I blinked, it glared at me from the darkness. I let myself into my house and called a hasty greeting to Jamie, who yelled back that she was on the phone. I trudged up the stairs to my bedroom. When I collapsed onto my bed, I dissolved into violent sobs. Self-loathing boiled in my stomach, stronger than if ever felt. My hands grabbed my sharpie and I sat up, pulling my jacket sleeves up my arms. Ripping the cap from the marker, I slashed broken, inky words across my wrists and arms.

Nothing.

Hopeless.

Worthless.

Ugly.

Selfish.

Weak.

Tears fell across the words, smudging them in the places that were not yet dry. The pain inside me kept growing despite the release I'd tried to give myself. I had to do something. I fumbled across the room to my desk. A pair of scissors sat to one side, sharp and brand new. I knew what I was going to do; there was no way I could stop this time. As I sat back on my bed, I picked up my phone to send him a message.

"I'm sorry." Was all it read.

Unfolding the scissors, I bared my wrists. The hateful black words glared upwards at me. With a quick motion, I hacked a deep gash through one word: selfish. Again and again I cut my skin apart; blood spattered my hands and mattress in tiny crimson droplets. As the dizzying pain overwhelmed my pain, I felt a strange sense of peace fall over me. Extending the other wrist, I cut one word into the pale skin.

Hate.

By now, I was very lightheaded. I dropped the bloody scissors and lay back, arms resting by my sides. My phone vibrated with his replies, but I ignored it. I drifted.

My name is Rebecca Todd.

This is the story of my first step into my addiction to pain.